A massive house explosion in Marengo, IL injured two people, leveled two homes and damaged at least 48 others leaving 19 of them uninhabitable. The injured were taken to Centegra Hospital-Woodstock where they were treated for minor burns and released. First responders said it was a miracle that no one was killed in the blast that took place in the early morning houses of June 11.

Fire crews responded to the scene in 500 block of Seventh Ave. just before 5 a.m. two find three homes on fire. Flames from the house that exploded had already spread to two neighboring homes, while homes more than a block away were damaged.

Witnesses said the flames shooting into the air could be seen from blocks away. The owners of the home were out of town when the blast occurred.

What Caused the Marengo Blast?

The size of the explosion makes a gas leak one suspected source, authorities said. In addition, some residents told police and local media that they smelled gas the night before the explosion. An investigation is still underway.

Nineteen-year-old Austin Keefer who lives next door to the home that exploded described to the Daily Herald what happened to his family. He said he and his dad were having something to eat in the kitchen, heard a loud boom and saw a bright flash and the next thing he knew they were covered in debris. He could hear his mom screaming from upstairs. She and his sister were trapped.

Austin dug himself and his father out of the debris. Neighbors brought a ladder to the house and his mom and sister climbed down from the second floor which burst into flames moments later.

How to Help

Donations of food, clothing and small appliances can be dropped off at the MORE Center, located at 829 Greenlee Street, between 9 a.m. and noon. Monetary donations are also welcome. Make checks payable to MORE Center and write “Marengo Disaster Fund” in the memo line.

Who Can Sue for a House Explosion?

When someone is injured in a house explosion and there is sufficient supporting evidence against a landlord, gas company, propane business, a lawsuit can be filed. The explosion lawyers at Pritzker Hageman can help you determine if you have a claim. They represent clients nationwide and recently secured a $10 million dollar settlement. To contact them for a free, no-obligation consultation, call 1-888-377-8900 (toll-free). Or, use the form below.

Firefighter battles house fire